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Individuals with PCOS are at 3-5x the risk of developing endometrial cancer relative to individuals without PCOS.[1],[2],[3]  In this article we explore the link between PCOS and endometrial cancer.

PCOS is associated with elevated levels of androgens[4], sex hormones that are produced in the ovaries, start at puberty and play a key role in reproductive health.[5]  Find out more about PCOS and Androgen Excess.

  • High androgen levels can lead to anovulation, the failure to release an egg through a regular menstrual cycle;[6]

  • Without ovulation, the endometrium, the lining of the uterus, does not shed in a regular monthly cycle;[7]

  • The endometrium that remains for an extended period without shedding is exposed to estrogen, a sex hormone essential to maintain sexual and reproductive health;[8]

  • In an estrogen-rich environment, the endometrial cells continue to grow and thicken the lining of the uterus, a process known as hyperplasia;[9] and

  • The endometrial cells crowd and develop abnormalities and can become cancerous.[10]

There are a variety of other risk factors for endometrial cancer, including:[11]

  • Increasing age;

  • Obesity;

  • Early menstruation or late menopause;

  • Genetics, including Lynch syndrome, a colorectal cancer disease; and

  • Medications, including hormone therapy for breast cancer.

Reviewed by Dr. O, one of Neuraura’s friends and trusted advisors.


Want to learn more about the connection between ovarian functioning and PCOS?  Check out our articles on anovulation and irregular periods.

Complications - Cancer

PCOS and Endometrial Cancer

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